We dragged the boys visited the British Museum the other day. We did the “greatest hits” in the morning: Rosetta Stone, Peat Bog Man, Elgin Marbles—then broke for lunch (Pizza Express again. At this point, I should probably buy stock in the damn company), and went back in the afternoon: Husband took Caleb up to Egypt because the boy loves him a mummy; Liam and I went to China and looked at jade, porcelain, and big stone Buddhas.

To their credit, the boys loved it. They brought their little notebooks and sketched things they liked, read all the info cards, argued about how Bog Man died. Murder? Execution? Murder! Execution! MURDER! EXECUTION!

But the next day: sightseeing hangover. When plans were announced in the morning we got “I hate history!” and “please please NOT another museum!” And because we are wise and wonderful perfectparents, we listened to our darling children and their reasonable requests. Plus it was a gorgeous sunny day and no one really wanted to be inside. So off we went to wander Hyde Park.

Despite much mockery of her during her lifetime (sorry, sorry, sorry), I now change my tune: love that Princess Diana, yesssirree.  That memorial playground with the Pirate Ship? Brilliant!  And the fountain? Fantabulous.

The sign outside the fountain says we’re welcome to “paddle hands and feet:”

Funny. Does “paddle hands and feet” mean “immerse self fully into ten inches of water,” in England-speak?  Because that’s what most of the kids were doing.

Here’s what it looked like inside the gate:

But actually, this post isn’t about sightseeing overload, or even the beauty of Hyde Park, where, perhaps due to Hilary Mantel’s Wolf Hall (what! you haven’t read it yet? get thyself to a bookstore or e-downloader, now!), I could see the ghosts of Hank 8 riding to the hounds through the tall grass, hunting wild boar.

Nope. This post is about the virtues of the skort. Or culottes, as I think they used to be called. Before I left New York, I ordered me a skort from Athleta. The skort is great, although buying it did not turn me into a mountain-climbing-make-my-own-surfboard-yoga-studio-owning-incredibly-fit-mother-of-two-who-also-speaks-Mandarin-and-is-learning-Sanskrit-just-for-fun. I remain my vaguely Midwestern somewhat squashy self.  Nevertheless, the skort is flattering, it’s flexible (wear it with your grown-up shoes to dinner or your flipflops to the beach), it’s lightweight, and it dries easily (really important when two soaking wet boys hurl themselves into your lap). And best of all, when you find yourself at the playground watching your kids, you don’t have to do that weird skirt-sit, where you end up looking like Laura Bush, ankles demurely crossed, knees to the side, in order to avoid flashing the entire park your bottom-of-the-suitcase undies.

Get yourself a skort. It may not make your kids love sightseeing but it will make everything else a whole lot easier.

Full disclosure: no skorts were sent my way in return for this post, alas. I had to pay for my own…and now I have three.  If Athleta would like to send me a skort, however, that would be just grand. (And by the way, they’re on sale now)